A GAME OF TWO HALVES

By Jill | January 21st, 2012

What a bizarre week on the weather front it has been at the nursery.  They say that a football match can be a game of two halves – but this week certainly has been!!   On Monday it was 7c – but on Monday night – we had a very sharp frost – down to -5C – and that left the next few days at 3-4C – such a change – now – Saturday – we are back up to 11C – mild and windy!!   The plants just do not know where they are!!

Still – it does mean that the ground is in very good workable condition for planting  – probably the best January for planting new trees and shrubs we have seen for a long time – certainly very different to last year!   The jury is still out as to whether there will be any real ‘winter’ this year – my guess for what it is worth – is that there will be a little bit of snow in mid-February for a few days – and that will be that – we will then run straight into spring!

What remains more of a concern though continues to be the lack of decent rainfall – and there is talk in some parts of Suffolk of drought orders in March if nothing arrives – worrying really – it is always said that Suffolk rain comes in winter – and at the moment it is pretty dry!   Let’s hope the old saying – ‘February fill dyke – black or white’ – comes true – because the ditches or dykes – most of them are dry – and have been for a long time.

On the nursery this week – has seen the grafting programme of ornamentals progressing.  Also there has been a useful period of maintenance of tunnels on an actual wet day  – we have been waiting for three months for one of those! – also a lot of rabbit fencing has gone on.   The one really frosty day also revealed some nibbling of fruit trees – they just cannot leave them alone!   If you have any newly-planted trees or shrubs – do not skimp on the protection from rabbits or deer – they really are a problem – and can destroy a newly-planted tree in one nocturnal visit – you have been warned!

UNTIL NEXT TIME,

RICHARD

ONWARDS AND UPWARDS INTO A NEW YEAR!

By Jill | January 13th, 2012

Happy New Year!!    Into 2012 – and we are pushing on with our work programme.   Besides all the usual stuff – this week has seen us starting our Grafting season.  From now until late March – Liz is locked away in her little shed – splicing together pieces of wood to form new trees in a few months time.

It is a fascinating art – and it is still incredible that a root and a shoot can grow together to form one.  If you would like to learn more about this – we do run a course on grafting where you can come to the nursery – and learn the theory – and then have a go and graft a tree to take home with you!!  Check out the Courses Page.

The weather has changed from one extreme to the other since Christmas – we had several days of gale-force winds which caused some damage on the nursery – mostly minor stuff – but extra hassle!   But most of the time – it has been incredibly mild – and only today – and apparently over the next few days – has it turned colder and frosty.

This is however – an ideal time to plant new trees and shrubs or hedging – the soil is not as wet as it normally would be at this time of the year – so anything planted now will root quickly – and be partly-established before the spring – and get off to a flying start so get cracking!!

UNTIL NEXT TIME,

RICHARD

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